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1

Human embryonic stem cells might get cheaper to create or purchase after the University of Wisconsin patent is revoked.

Posted by golob | April 3, 2007 7:59 AM
2

I am sick of this attitude that there is nothing to be done to stop a stalker. Nobody would describe me as gun advocate, but if the court issuing a restraining cannot enforce the order then how about getting the victim a gun and some trainning at city expense?
It would be voluntairy of course, but it would equalize the situation and maybe give the stalker some pause to think about the reality they will not have the last word. Stalkers are usually under the mistaken impression that they will always have the last word. An armed woman could teach them a lesson.

Posted by Ellie | April 3, 2007 8:46 AM
3

of course gun control is out of the question...

Posted by wf | April 3, 2007 8:48 AM
4

#1)Firearms are not allowed on the UW Campus. They aren't allowed on Metro either if she rode the bus.

#2) You really want your taxes to go to provide firearms and training to anyone who files a restraining order?

Short of giving her a 24 hour bodyguard, I don't know what the SPD or UWPD could have done. I've worked at the UW for 10 years and I have seen very little security. The UW cops I've seen have all been on the Ave or U Village. I work pretty close to 15th and we get people off the street all the time, often they are here to steal laptops from unlocked offices. Short of turning the UW into an intercity high school, there isn't anything that will be done.

Posted by elswinger | April 3, 2007 9:08 AM
5

The #1 & #2 I wrote did not refer to the numbers of the posters. My post was in response to Ellie, whose outrage I share, but who's solution I disagree with.

Posted by elswinger | April 3, 2007 9:12 AM
6

Reasonable gun control is necessary for WMDs and machine guns. I have reached the conclusion that a right to bear arms is a good thing. That may not have been the original intent of the Second Ammendment, but people have taken that right as their own. It is similar to the right of privacy. There is no formal mention of a right to privacy in the Constitution, but people have again assumed a right to privacy and courts have found in favor of such a right.
In the long run the citizens may need the Second Ammendment in order to protect the other 9 ammendments from further erosion.

Posted by Ellie | April 3, 2007 9:13 AM
7

To me, a gun is too often false security. At the risk of sounding like a bleeding heart liberal, how about some mental health care for these stalkers? Obviously, they have some sort of personality disorder and while restraining orders are certainly helpful, they don't address the root problem. Even in the unlikely event they "get over" their obsession, it will probably be just a transfer of the obsession to another person.

Of course, we have a problem dealinig with mental health issues in this country, so it's not likely we will address the problem in any logical manner.

Posted by catalina vel-duray | April 3, 2007 9:20 AM
8

This one makes me sick because it's closer to home. The Capitol Hill shooting was in your neighborhood, but this loser lived in mine. I don't know where his apartment "eight blocks east of Ballard High School" was, but I drive past there all the time, and live not too far east of that. And his drunk-driving/resisting arrest was just south of where I live and where I work. I hear shitheads like this roaring up and down Aurora almost every night.

That poor woman. Her terror rips me apart. The pictures of her email printed in the P-I is devastating. Unfortunately she and many others let these fucks carry on far too long, maybe out of a misguided hope things will "get better". Things like that don't get better. She should have gotten as far from him as possible a year ago, but she kept going back. Ladies: don't go back, go forward.

And you gun nuts, particularly you gun nuts who love the spelling "Ammendment": piss off. Now is not the time to go on one of your technical rants about precisely what caliber and angle and shooting technique is best in these situations. Keep your John Wayne fantasies to yourselves this time. There is no reason to believe a terrified woman with a gun could defend herself against a determined asshole shooter, and there's no reason to believe that YOU and your wobbly power fantasies would hold up either.

Rebecca Griego, I'm sorry, we failed you. This shouldn't happen.

King County Coalition Against Domestic Violence: 206-568-5454. Call them now if you need them.

Posted by Fnarf | April 3, 2007 9:36 AM
9

@4,

Firearms aren't allowed on the UW campus? Well, how nice that that asshole obeyed the UW's rules then. Personally, if I were being stalked, I would seriously consider purchasing a firearm for my own protection, but that's probably why I've never been stalked. Abusers are very good at identifying, and then fixating on, women who seem vulnerable.

Posted by keshmeshi | April 3, 2007 10:29 AM
10

Guns are usually used against the people who buy them to avoid being victims, actually. It's a false sense of security.

And the actual place isn't far from a bus stop and some fairly crowded areas.

Posted by Will in Seattle | April 3, 2007 10:43 AM
11

Not to mention a couple of hundred students, staff, and faculty in the building. A blazing gun battle, what a great idea!

This idea that in the most fearful, stressful situation in your entire life you're going to be able to go all Bruce Willis on the motherfucker who's made his last mistake, with kettledrums pounding in the background, is a fantasy most often indulged by just the kind of Dwight Schrutes who are most likely to crumble in the face of reality. The determined one who will not be swayed is the jerk with nothing more to lose, not the terrified, conflicted woman with everything to live for. Ask a cop or a soldier how easy it is to pull the trigger on someone even when you have no other choice. Get real.

Posted by Fnarf | April 3, 2007 10:59 AM
12

#9 Don't shoot the messenger.

Had Ms. Griego had a gun on campus, even for her protection, if she had been discovered to posses one, she would have immediately been fired and possibly even faced criminal charges. It is also a felony to possess a firearm on a Metro bus, and a felony to carry a firearm on your person anywhere in the city (maybe the State) without a permit to carry a concealed weapon.

Nothing would have physically stopped her from bringing a gun on campus anymore than it prevented her murderer to bring one.

A gun battle would have likely meant more people would have been shot or killed.

Also as tragic as this has been, this is only the second time in 7 years that this has happened on the UW campus. It is a tragedy, but let's not treat this as an epidemic.

Posted by elswinger | April 3, 2007 11:12 AM
13

While we should not be complacent about violence, we should also be realistic. It doesn't happen very often, and it's impossible to get rid of entirely. Gun control proponents and gun advocates alike make the mistake of confusing an object--a simple tool--with the real underlying problem. More gun laws wouldn't have prevented this murder, and more guns wouldn't have prevented it either. Better tools for dealing with domestic violence could have helped--none of those tools being guns or gun control--but there is no panacea. Violence among humans is a complex psychological and social phenomenon with similarly complex psychological and social solutions. Knee-jerk ideological responses don't help.

Posted by Cascadian | April 3, 2007 11:16 AM
14

this stalker was out to harm, and the victim was a victim. sure, there happened to be a gun involved, and she happened to be 20 and he 35 when they started dating. but this freak occurance would have been difficult to avoid.

i would hope that we can learn lessons from this. learn to support our loved ones when they are in a similar situation. don't blame the alcohol, assess the risk and blame the person. the victim is not at fault for this happening to her, but i hope we can learn from her mistakes to protect others.

police cannot provide protection for every case like this.

if you are going to beat up someone, you need to be prepared for the consequences. if that means they immediately leave you and file charges against you, that might be for the better. i'd rather punish the one time "mistake" than allow for this to happen. and maybe punishment for server cases could include a ankle braclet which informs the victim if the stalker is within 1000 feet...

Posted by infrequent | April 3, 2007 11:27 AM
15

I am not an NRA-lovin' gun nut, but I honestly do think #2 has a point w.r.t arming domestic violence/stalking victims. The problem with most of the approaches is that more restrictions, punishments, etc. all assume, at some level, that the would-be victimizer will behave rationally and try to avoid tougher punishments - but stalkers aren't rational or predictable in that way, nor will they be kept from harming others by 911 calls. It seems like the only thing that could keep some of these folks at bay is the most direct sort of self-defense.

Posted by tsm | April 3, 2007 11:40 AM
16

here are the three things i would recommend as a result of this:

1) make stalkers and those with court orders have to wear ankle bracelet's that notify the victim if they get within a certain distance.

2) allow a new type of complaint. many first time victims don't want to make a big deal out of the first occurance because people do make mistakes, and when we love that person we don't want them to experience the potential full harsh effects of the legal system. if there was a new sort of temporary report where a first instance could be granted a restaining order without it going on the offenders permanent record (if they remain out of trouble for a set period of time -- say three years), maybe first time victims would be more willing to take action.

3) support from friends when a friend or loved one tells you of something like, make them take action. it is far better to be safe than sorry if someone is violent against you and threatens worse.

Posted by infrequent | April 3, 2007 11:53 AM
17

OK. Lets say Ms. Greigo had a gun, she would have probably kept in her handbag, backpack, or desk drawer. She would have still been killed before she could reach for her gun. It might have saved her at home, but not at work, and probably not in the street.

Posted by elswinger | April 3, 2007 12:01 PM
18

@17 - I think there are enough contexts in which a handgun would have been valuable to Ms. Griego to make it a worthwhile option. After all, in none of the contexts you describe would a 911 call have been effective.

Posted by tsm | April 3, 2007 12:19 PM
19

She had the legal right to purchase a handgun. Even though illegal, she could have brought the gun on the bus and to work (at the UW). I suppose she could have typed with one hand and always had the gun in her shooting hand, for when her assailant showed up.

But no way do I think it is the states (or my tax dollars) responsibility to just give someone a gun for their protection. If that's the case, then the state should arm all of us.

Posted by elswinger | April 3, 2007 1:46 PM
20

Amusingly, Canada has twice as many guns per capita, but 1/10th the per capita death rate from guns.

Mostly because people carrying them around get locked up as loonies. The only time you use them is for hunting.

Posted by Will in Seattle | April 3, 2007 3:34 PM
21

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